Target Audience: Mature Audiences (MA)
Characters: Dr. Ella West/Kelsey McGuire, Lance Black, Skyler Black, Amber Frist, Mac “The Snake” Hannon, Gabe McNealy, Mitch McNealy
Synopsis: Doctor Ella Watts wants her old life back. Desperately. But the past has returned for its rematch, and going back home—even telling anyone her real name—isn’t an option until she’s confident in her MMA abilities. Personal trainer Lance Black is the man to help her reach her goals. Not only is he toned, muscular, and gorgeous, he’s patient, a great teacher, and willing to treat her like a worthy opponent. Except his size makes her freeze whenever he gets too close. If Ella can’t learn how to overcome her fear of being attacked, she’ll never be able to move on with her life.
Underground fighter Lance Black knows there’s more to the mysterious blonde ninja than a beautiful woman determined to improve her fighting skills. She can best anyone close to her size – man or woman – but insists on working out with him, even though he’s got a good 70 pounds and several inches on her. Despite her reticence, he’s determined to get her to open up so he can help her get over her mental block. And if that means he can get to know her outside the gym, all the better.
As long as she never learns his secrets.
The fourth book in Abby Niles’s Love to the Extreme series, Healing Love is also an enjoyable stand-alone read. That being said, I found that there were still several occasions at the beginning where the emotional responses of the characters, while necessary for the progression of the storyline, were too mercurial to establish plausible believability. (The same could be said for their inability to immediately recognize someone that they had close encounters with only a day or two beforehand.) Even so, it is obvious that Niles has done her research and has ultimately provided her readers with another great read. Her characters are well-developed and the struggles presented are real. Kudos!
** This book was provided as an ARC in exchange for honest review.**